Posted on January 28, 2010. Filed under: CRICKET,SPORTS,IPL,IPL3, POLITICS | Tags: , , , , , , |

There was one thing that united the people of Pakistan,especially, the politicians and the armed forces of that country-India hating.The issue of Kashmir seemed to bring out the best out of a motley crowd that also includes professional gun slingers and ideologues.

But the non-inclusion of players from Pakistan in the recently concluded player auction, seems to have given something new to beat India with. Notwithstanding the explanations provided by the teamowners and the IPL supremo Lalit Modi, Pakistan went for the jugular. Sports bosses of Pakistan wanted India to apologise while the cricketers, past and present talked about a conspiracy. There was even a talk of Pakistan boycotting the Hockey World Cup to be hosted in Delhi in two weeks time.

A teamowner went on air about how highly the players from Pakistan were regarded for their abilities. He even professed for the need to have good relations between the two neighbouring countries.It is only in India that one can make such statements and also get away with them.

Initially, the government did not want to make any comments and rightly so put the ball in the courts of the IPL.But it seems the government and the powers felt some discomfort over the continuation of Track2 diplomacy with Pakistan and decided to clear the air.In an entirely unexpected and unjustified move, the Home Minister, P. Chidambaram ruled out any pressure from the side of the government behind the decision of excluding the players from Pakistan.He even made us alive to the fact Pakistan is currently the reigning T20 world champion and regretted the non-inclusion.

What was the Minister for External Affairs S M Krishna doing?

Why does not the hyper twitterer Shashi Tharoor come up with his own view on the whole episode?

India has the dubious history of having people like Mir Jafar and Jai Chand in the past but now they come in the form of the likes of Shah Rukh Khan.

Pardon me, if I sound jingoistic but there is very little logic behind the statements made by Shah Rukh Khan and Chidambaram.

Is there nothing more worthwhile for the Ministers to do?

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Posted on January 21, 2010. Filed under: CRICKET,SPORTS,IPL,IPL3 | Tags: , , , , , |

The cat is out of the proverbial bag with the IPL supremo Lalit Modi saying in an interview to NDTV that there was a risk associated with Pakistan players. This comes as a surprise since Mr.Modi denied after the conclusion of the auction for the players that the BCCI had nothing to do with the decision of the team owners not to pick any of the 11 players from Pakistan who were available for purchase.

The full text of the interview is here:

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Posted on January 19, 2010. Filed under: CRICKET,SPORTS,IPL,IPL3 | Tags: , , , |

The auctions for players for IPL3 took place today and the television ‘news’ channels having nothing more worthwhile to do, hammered on our heads, eyes and ears about the same.

By the time the auction ended, none of the 11 players from Pakistan was picked by any of the franchise.This incident dominated the evening and prime time news shows.

Some players from Pakistan called it a ‘conspiracy’ while others felt sorry for the Indians being unable to witness those talented players in action.Conspiracy because the Pakistan players would have been available for the entire IPL3.Pakistan is the defending T20 World Champions which would have made the players from that country a definite value addition to any team.

There are two reasons which I feel made the team owners develop cold feet when bidding for the Pakistan players.

In the first place, there is no certainty that players from across the border would have been available to play given that the government has never made it clear about the granting of visas.So like any shrewd businessman, the teams put the money where it was really worth and were not prepared to take any risk in the face of uncertainty.This is sound business.

Secondly, the team owners wanted to make a politically correct statement, even as the interest of the country comes next to self interest for them. In this atmosphere where jingoism rules the air, it might come in handy to keep clear from any future controversy.Looks like the team owners want a certificate of appreciation from the likes of Bal Thackeray.

This is a perfect case study where sound business and political correctness have successfully cleared the SWOT test.

So much for ‘chaddi’ (T20) cricket!.

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